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Children and Young People’s
Eating Disorders


The Children and Young Peoples Eating Disorders Programme supports the delivery of the core clinical programmes within the Long Term Plan and the Mental Health Implementation Plan 2019/20 - 2023/24 (the Implementation Plan) by connecting commissioners, providers, professionals, patients and the public across pathways of care with the aim of improving health outcomes. This is achieved by sharing best practice and innovation, assessing and benchmarking quality and outcomes and driving improvement where required, through targeted support.


Laura Ansboro

Clinical Network Manager

Jenna Wallhead

Quality Improvement Manager

Natalie Fox

Quality Improvement Lead

Ursula Philpot

Children and Young People’s Eating Disorder Clinical Associate

What We Are Trying To Achieve

The Yorkshire and the Humber Clinical Network Eating Disorder programme for Children and Young People is led by our Clinical Associate, Ursula Philpot, and Natalie Fox, Quality Improvement Lead.

The programme aims to support system partners in ensuring services are accessible and available in a timely manner and in line with National requirements.


Why It’s Important

Research has highlighted the negative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the wellbeing of Children and Young People. These effects are reported to be due to changes in regular routine, engagement in physical exercise, time spent with friends and family and relationships with food and technology (For more information please see Exploring the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and UK lockdown on individuals with experience of eating disorders | Journal of Eating Disorders )

Consequently, there has been a significant increase in the number of under 20’s admitted over the past year (2020/21), with figures almost 50% higher than in 2019/20 (NHS Digital).

What we have achieved in the last 6 months

  • Identified areas for improvement by asking services, parents/carers and families about the current service offer and experiences through our annual mapping exercise.
  • Provided regular opportunities for professionals to increase their knowledge around Eating Disorders, through ‘learning lunches’ (short training sessions), a ‘Community of Practice’ (peer support) and in-depth courses offered by Beat and SYEDA (South Yorkshire Eating Disorder Association). In-house training on Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID) and Autism and Eating Disorders has also been delivered by our Clinical Associates.
  • Commissioned Beat to support 30 families on their ‘Developing Dolphins’ programme to increase their knowledge, skills and confidence in caring for a loved one with an Eating Disorder.
  • Launched an Eating Disorder Champions programme to ensure non-Eating Disorder specialists are trained and supported to share learning and best practice amongst colleagues and signpost them to relevant resources and support

What We Plan To Do In The Next 6 Months:

  • Work in partnership with Beat to provide further training opportunities for non Eating Disorder specialists (e.g. Paediatric Nurses, General Practitioners etc.) and parents, carers and families.
  • Continue to plan, develop and deliver in-house training opportunities for professionals, with targeted awareness raising sessions with general practitioners (GPs) and education practitioners. 
  • Undertake our annual mapping exercise to identify areas of improvement.

Meetings and Events

  • Yorkshire and the Humber Clinical Network Children and Young People’s Eating Disorder Learning Collaborative (Bi-annual)
  • Yorkshire and the Humber Clinical Network Children and Young People’s Eating Disorder Learning Lunches (Bi-monthly) – Topics have included; Bulimia, PICA, Restrain to Feed/Naso-gastric (NG) feeding, Medical Monitoring and Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID)
  • Yorkshire and the Humber Clinical Network Children and Young People’s Eating Disorder Community of Practice (peer support/space for shared learning) (Bi-Monthly) 
  • ARFID Pathway Development Group (Bi-monthly)